Microsoft SQL Server Express edition is a replacement for MSDE and it is absolutely free to download and distribute. You can download SQL Server Express from Microsoft web site.
Before installing SQL Server Express, you must download and install .NET Framework 2.0.
Visit the URL http://msdn.microsoft.com/vstudio/express/sql/download/ to download SQL Server Express.
There are two different editions of SQL Server Express available for free download:
SQL Server 2005 Express Edition
SQL Server 2005 Express Edition with Advanced Services
The Advanced editions has mainly 3 additional features:
1. SQL Server Management Studio Express, a graphical management tool based on SQL Server Management Studio that makes it easy to manage and administer SQL Server Express databases.
2. Reporting Services, an integrated report creation and design environment to create reports.
3. Full-Text Search, a powerful search engine for searching text-intensive data.
Download appropriate version depending on your needs. If you do not need advanced features like reporting services and full-text search, it is a good idea to install only SQL Server 2005 Express Edition (not advanced edition) and then install the SQL Server Management Studio Express separately. Advanced edition will create additional services that can slow down your system.
Download Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Express Edition
Download SQL Server Management Studio Express
Download SQL Server Express Advanced Edition
Visit the SQL Express page for more information about downloading and installing SQL Server Express.